Our online editorial coordinator Jennifer Hubbert tied the knot at Melia Varadero last January. We've picked her brain to explore the client decision making process and what intel it can offer agents selling destination weddings.
Top 5 Challenges for Deciding On & Planning a Destination Wedding
1. Inability to visualize the wedding day. There's not a lot of Cuba wedding photography available at the moment, presumably because wedding websites that offer 'real wedding' posts (like TheKnot.com) are written by American brides who aren't (yet) able to travel to Cuba. Sourcing photography is critical because couples want to fall in love with the venue and avoid surprises if they haven't visited the resort in the past.
2. Knowing what exactly the resort offers for a) ceremony venues; and b) indoor reception rooms. (Simple enough, but widely overlooked.)
3. Lack of web resources. We love Cuba for its old-world charms but its web presence is low because Cubans don’t have liberal access to the internet. For that reason, finding inspiration or searching for vendors is difficult.
4. What’s the food like? Cuba’s culinary reputation persists but it’s not a concern when staying at a Melia property. In fact, Jenn remarked that her private wedding reception was the best meal she had during her week-long stay.
5. How will the embargo affect my wedding? What items are not available at destination? What decor items should the couple bring with them?
4 Easy Strategies to Close the Sale
Are you surprised to read that 3 of the 5 challenges were related to visualization? Here are four strategies to easily address these challenges:
1. Ask yourself, are you providing prospective and active clients with a complete vision? Do you have the tools to paint the aspiration?
2. Spend the time gathering relevant photography from resort wedding coordinators.
3. Follow up after with clients after the wedding. Does the couple have an online wedding album? You won't be able to take images from their site without explicitly permission but you can bookmark the album to show prospective clients exactly what they can expect their wedding to look like.
4. Communicate the small things like décor just as much as the big-picture considerations like reception room capacities, or whether they can get married on the beach, the lawn or the terrace. Those details might seem trivial to you, but they are critical elements of any wedding, and extremely relevant to the engaged couple.
Bottom line: Leaving couples in the dark increases uncertainty. If a client can't envision it, she may decide against a destination wedding completely. Arm yourself with all possible resources to negate uncertainty.